Fay Slimm

(Ageless. / in Cornwall U.K.)

A Colourful Past?


Relics of castles and mines fill the eye
Of the curious here, tell their own tale
With colourful mixture of 'truth and lie'
Known as legend. This allure never fails
Along Cornish coasts, where adventures leap
From every cave. The past is present, clings
With dark grit to each cliff and white beach.
Old cannon ball scars, and granite rock rings
Where victims stood no chance. Castellated
Forts brought battle's swift end to each mighty
Man, and slower death to prisoners, fated
To black dungeon cell. Danger fell in flights
Of ladders too, which daily took the lives
Of countless miners, toiling in the dark
To dig for tin. Sea above, and striving
With the deadly wet within, souls made marks
Of painful gain with every load. Beauty
Was not noticed then, daylight hours and night
The same, lives were spent in laboured duty.
Viewed now by tourist, never will seem quite
As tragic as old gravestones tell. Former
Days were coloured with tough life, bravely borne.

Submitted: Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Edited: Wednesday, March 11, 2009

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Comments about this poem (A Colourful Past? by Fay Slimm )

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  • Kevin Wells (3/24/2009 3:43:00 PM)

    I love Cornwall and this sounds like the Cornwall I have visited on many occasions. It is a place of scenic beauty mixed with the mystery of celtic mythology, new-age mysticism (which, of course, is todays' interpretation of something infinitely older) , smuggling, witchcraft, prehistoric dolmens and villages... what a superb place! and you have reminded me that it is time to go back! (Report) Reply

  • Deva De Silva (3/20/2009 10:14:00 AM)

    As usual, your articulation and story telling amazes me and the inferences capture the reader beyond mere words…

    The following, my favourite expression:

    The past is present, clings
    With dark grit
    to each cliff and white beach. (Report) Reply

  • James Roberts (3/11/2009 11:29:00 AM)

    I've been a coal miner and have a coal scar so I really appreciated this poem and the sentiments expressed well done Fay 10+
    jim (Report) Reply

  • Carl Harris (3/11/2009 10:03:00 AM)

    This is a splendidly written and told tale, Fay, and I liked this fine poem very much.
    One big advantage kings, Lords, and the wealthy had in those olden days is that there was no mass media or daily newspaper to reveal most of their secret tyranny to the peasants or perceived enemies. News travelled by word of mouth. People simply disappeared, never to be seen again, after being captured and placed in those dungeons of ancient castles or caves you so aptly described in your fine poem. Inquiring about someone simply led to your own disappearance back then. Modern folk tend to overlook that life was very different in ancient times. Carl. (Report) Reply

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